The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is an 10-week education research internship hosted by the Curry School of Education at U.Va, with support from interdisciplinary faculty, administrators, students and staff across the university. The program aims to provide undergraduate students from underrepresented groups with valuable educational research and professional development experience to better prepare them for careers in academics, policy, or research organizations. During the 2016 summer, six interns from across the U.S. worked on research projects, attended workshops and presented at a research conference. Read more about each intern and their research project from our 2016 Question and Answer series: Dr. Deutsch, Dr. Kennedy, and Dr. Wong.
The Curry School graduates from August 2015, December 2015, and May 2016 participated in the University of Virginia Final Exercises on May 22, 2016.
The Curry School of Education hosted the UVA African Music and Dance Ensemble at a Cups & Conversations in February 2016. The African Music & Dance Ensemble explores traditional music and dance forms from West Africa (Ghana, Togo). The ensemble led an interactive performance where many of our students, staff, and faculty participated. This event was sponsored by the Curry Dean’s Office, and organized jointly by the Curry Staff Advisory Council (CSAC), the Diversity Action Committee (DAC), and Ed Council.
The Summer Undergraduate Research Program (SURP) is an 10-week education research internship hosted by the Curry School of Education at U.Va, with support from interdisciplinary faculty, administrators, students and staff across the university. The program aims to provide undergraduate students from underrepresented groups with valuable educational research and professional development experience to better prepare them for careers in academics, policy, or research organizations. During the 2015 summer, eight interns from across the U.S. worked on research projects, attended workshops and presented at a research conference. Read more about each intern and their research project from our 2015 Question and Answer series: Dr.s Tolan & Williams, Dr. Kennedy, Dr. Deutsch, and Futch & Deutsch.
Curry School faculty and staff gathered on May 14 to honor faculty members who have retired over the past academic year: Laura Smolkin,Rebecca Kneedler, David Brenemen, Sandi Cohen, Joanne McNergney, and Bob McNergney.
On Friday, April 24, we celebrated our students who received financial awards funded by the philanthropy of Curry alumni and friends. We also honored recipients of the Curry Outstanding Student Awards.
Students take charge at Sixth Annual Curry Research Conference (CRC) on March 27th, 2015. CRC is an opportunity for students to share their education research with other Curry students and with faculty members. Read more about this year’s conference in this article.
Students entered the fray (and took home some awards) in Curry’s Fourth Annual Gingerbreadical Village Contest.
Under a crystal clear sky of twinkling stars on Friday, October 24, Curry School alumni, friends, faculty, staff, and community partners gathered to celebrate the completed renovation of Ruffner Hall and its significance for the future of the Curry School of Education. Nearly 300 people gathered over the course of the evening to tour the building and reminisce with colleagues, old friends, and former professors.
“The work of Curry’s faculty has affected every state, and countries around the globe,” said President Teresa Sullivan in her remarks at the 5 p.m. reception. “Its faculty has helped the University to be ranked among the top three institutions in faculty influence on education policy. Its graduates are scholars and practitioners who are leaders in their respective professions.”
“For me, the reopening of Ruffner marks the beginning of a new era in the school’s history,” noted Dean Bob Pianta in his remarks, “one in which our focus is truly where it needs to be – on being the most innovative and influential school in the country – an education school that truly matters for the public good. The completions of these building and renovation projects mean we are now One Curry – all of our programs, faculty, and staff together in one place.”
Several of the Curry School programs have long been rated among the best in the nation. Several new appointments just upped the ante.
Dr. Noelle Hurd from the University of Virginia completed a talk entitled “Natural Mentoring Relationships: Why They Matter and What We Can Do To Encourage Their Formation” on Friday March 3rd, 2017 for the Curry Research Lectureship Series.
Talk abstract: Using a resilience framework, my research to date has demonstrated the potential of natural mentoring relationships (i.e., naturally-occurring, supportive, intergenerational relationships between youth and nonparental adults) to influence positively the psychosocial outcomes of adolescents and emerging adults. This presentation will focus on current and future directions of my research. These directions are guided by the following primary research questions: 1) What are key moderating and mediating factors that determine the success of these relationships in promoting more positive developmental outcomes? 2) How do the broader contexts within which youth are situated influence the formation of natural mentoring relationships? and 3) How can we intervene to encourage the onset of natural mentoring relationships among youth who are lacking these supportive ties?
Dr. Mark Lipsey from Vanderbilt University completed a talk on entitled “Are the Expectations for State-Funded Pre-K Realistic? The Tennessee Pre-K Study and Reflections about its Implications” on Friday November 11th, 2016 for the Curry Research Lectureship Series.
Talk abstract: Over the last 15 years or so, there has been a considerable increase in the implementation and expansion of state-funded prekindergarten programs aimed at children from low-income families. Policy interest in these investments has largely been propelled by high expectations that such programs will help close the achievement gap evidenced by low-income children and produce long-term positive life outcomes on graduation rates, employment, criminal behavior, and the like. The ongoing study of the Tennessee Voluntary Prekindergarten program is the only well-controlled longitudinal study of the extent to which the effects of a scaled-up state-funded pre-k program are sustained beyond the end of the pre-k year. The findings so far—through the end of third grade and continuing—do not support the high expectations for statewide targeted pre-k; indeed, they include some negative effects. These results have stimulated various reflections on what might be causing them, the challenges facing state pre-k programs, and how well-founded the high expectations for such programs actually are.
On November 2, 2016, US Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. offered the Fall 2016 Walter N. Ridley lecture, titled The Importance of Quality Preschool and Early Learning.
Visit our Ridley Lecture page for more information about the life and legacy of Walter Ridley.
John B. King, Jr. is the U.S. Secretary of Education, a position he assumed in January 2016. In tapping him to lead the U.S. Department of Education, President Obama called Dr. King “an exceptionally talented educator,” citing his commitment to “preparing every child for success” and his lifelong dedication to education as a teacher, principal, and leader of schools and school systems.
Before becoming Secretary, Secretary King had served at the Department since January 2015 and carried out the duties of the Deputy Secretary, overseeing all preschool-through-12th-grade education policies and programs as well as Department operations. Secretary King joined the Department following his tenure as the first African-American and Puerto Rican to serve as New York State Education Commissioner, a post he held from 2011 to 2015.
King began his career in education as a high school social studies teacher in Puerto Rico and Boston and a middle school principal.
He credits New York City public school teachers — particularly educators at P.S. 276 in Canarsie and Mark Twain J.H.S. in Coney Island — for saving his life by providing rich, engaging, and transformative educational experiences and giving him hope about the future.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in government from Harvard University, a J.D. from Yale Law School, and a Master of Arts in the teaching of social studies and a doctorate in education from Teachers College at Columbia University.
Dr. Sean Reardon from Stanford University completed a talk entitled “200 Million Test Scores and What Do We Know? Studying Educational Opportunity with Big Data” on Friday October 7th, 2016 for the Ed Policy Seminar Series sponsored by EdPolicyWorks.
Talk Abstract: We test students a great deal in the United States. In grades three through eight alone, U.S. students take roughly 50 million standardized state accountability tests each year. Their scores on these tests, aggregated within geographic school districts and student subgroups, provide a useful proxy measure of the sum total of educational opportunities available to children in different communities and groups. In this talk, I will describe the construction and use of a population-level data set (the Stanford Education Data Archive) based on over 200 million test scores from 2009-2013. Using these data, I will describe the patterns and correlates of academic performance and racial/ethnic achievement gaps at an unprecedented level of detail. These patterns reveal a great deal about patterns of educational opportunity in the United States.
Dr. Mimi Engel from Vanderbilt University completed a talk entitled “Mathematics Instruction in Kindergarten: Understanding the Evidence” on Tuesday September 20th, 2016 for the Ed Policy Seminar Series sponsored by EdPolicyWorks.
Talk Abstract: Kindergarten mathematics skills are important for subsequent achievement, yet mathematics is underemphasized in kindergarten classrooms. Using nationally representative data, Engel, Claessens, & Finch (2013) explored the relationship between students’ school-entry math skills, classroom content coverage, and end-of-kindergarten math achievement. Although the vast majority of children entered kindergarten having mastered basic counting and able to recognize simple geometric shapes, their teachers reported spending the most mathematics time—typically about 12 or 13 days per month—on this content. Although teachers reported increased coverage of advanced content between the 1998–1999 and 2010–2011 school years, they continued to place more emphasis on basic content (Engel, Claessens, Watts, & Farkas, 2016). Both studies find that time on advanced content is positively associated with student learning, whereas time on basic content has a negative association. These results suggest that increased exposure to more advanced mathematics content could benefit the vast majority of kindergartners. Building on the studies described above, we are currently conducting observations of kindergarten mathematics instruction in a large urban district. In addition to sharing results from the studies described above, Engel will present early results from this study. Preliminary results will include information on how much time kindergarten teachers in this district spend teaching mathematics, what content they cover, how content is delivered, and the extent to which teachers scaffold their instruction, ask students open-ended questions, as well as other aspects of mathematics teaching and learning in kindergarten.
Director of the Center of Design and Health at the School of Architecture, UVA. A previous landscape architect turned environmental psychologist, she explores the interaction of people with their environment. She’s best known as Restorative Environments researcher. Much of her research focuses on health inequities in economically disadvantaged communities, including racial/ethnic minorities, children and teenagers, the elderly, and people with chronic health conditions.
Abstract: This talk highlights the benefits of green space access in school settings for behavioral and performance outcomes. It presents two studies both carried out in deprived schools in Central Scotland; the first compares the effect of indoor versus outdoor education (delivered in a forest setting) on a range of wellbeing outcomes in teenagers; the second study explores the benefits to memory recall in early years pupils from curriculum tasks carried out indoors versus outdoors in a range of playground settings.
VIDEO Part 1 VIDEO Part 2
Dr. Dylan Conger from George Washington University completed a talk entitled “The Effect of Price Shocks on Undocumented College Students’ Attainment and Completion” on Monday May 9th, 2016 for the Ed Policy Seminar Series sponsored by EdPolicyWorks.
Talk Abstract: We examine the effect of a price shock caused by the temporary removal of in-state tuition benefits on the attainment of undocumented immigrants enrolled in a large urban college system using a difference- in-differences identification strategy. The 113 percent one-semester tuition increase led to an 8 percent decrease in reenrollment and a similarly-sized reduction in credit accumulation. Furthermore, students who entered college the semester prior to the price shock experienced lasting reductions in attainment, including a 22 percent decrease in degree receipt. Conversely, among students who had been enrolled for at least a year, the price shock only affected the timing of college exit. Our results suggest that public subsidies that lower college prices can increase degree completion among resource-constrained students who have made the decision to enroll in college, with larger benefits accruing to those who are early in their college careers.
Amanda Kibler, assistant professor at the Curry School of Education, discusses her co-authored Teachers College Record article, Languages Across Borders: Social Network Development in an Adolescent Two-Way Dual-Language Program. #TheVoice
Dr. Jason Grissom from Vanderbilt University completed a talk entitled “Principal Licensure Exams and Future Job Performance: Evidence from the School Leaders Licensure Assessment” on Monday April 25th, 2016 for the Ed Policy Seminar Series sponsored by EdPolicyWorks.
Talk Abstract: Many states require prospective principals to pass a licensure exam as a condition of obtaining an administrative license. Little is known, however, about the potential effects of principal licensure exams on the pool of available principals or whether exams are predictive of later job performance. We investigate the most commonly used exam, the School Leaders Licensure Assessment (SLLA), using ten years of data on test takers in Tennessee. Our analysis uncovers two main results. First, there are substantial differences in passage rates by test-taker race and gender. In particular, nonwhites with otherwise similar characteristics are 12 percentage points less likely than whites to attain the required minimum score for licensure. Second, although applicants with higher scores are more likely to be hired as principals, we find little evidence that SLLA scores predict potential measures of principal job performance, including supervisors’ ratings from the statewide evaluation system or low-stakes leadership ratings from a statewide teacher survey. Our results raise questions about whether conditioning administrative licensure on SLLA passage is consistent with the goal of a diverse principal workforce.
The Stubborn Roots of Educational Inequality: Race, Class, and Organizational Culture in U.S. Schools.
by Prudence Carter, Ph.D.
Jacks Family Professor of Education
Tuesday, April 12
Holloway Hall Room 116 in Bavaro Hall
Reception following in Bavaro Atrium
Prudence L. Carter is the Jacks Family Professor of Education, Professor of Sociology (by courtesy), and Faculty Director of the John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities at Stanford University. Carter’s research and teaching expertise are in the areas of inequality and the sociology of education, with a particular focus on race, ethnicity, class, gender, culture, and identity. She is the author of the award-winning book Keepin’ It Real: School Success Beyond Black and White (2005) and of Stubborn Roots: Race, Culture, and Inequality in U.S. and South African Schools (2012). She co-edited Closing the Opportunity Gap: What America Must Do to Give Every Child an Even Chance and has authored numerous journal articles, book chapters, and essays. Carter holds a Ph.D. and an M.Phil. in sociology from Columbia University, an M.A. in sociology and education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and a B.S. in applied mathematics and economics from Brown University. In June 2016, Carter will become Dean of the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Berkeley.